The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Found a note on my car

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon, this Sunday, will box me in unless I have the foresight to park outside the race course before then. I'm not sure what to do about Parker, either; there are a couple of underpasses from where I live to the park, but it looks like from the time we wake up until about noon Sunday we're not going to go very far.

The weather should be really good, though possibly a little warm. Good luck, runners!

High-speed rail in the Midwest

Chicago is finally getting high-speed rail service:

The ambitious project proposed for the Midwest would cover 3,000 miles in nine states. All lines would radiate from a hub in downtown Chicago. The cost of a fully completed Midwest network is estimated at almost $8 billion.

Travel times of almost 5½ hours on Amtrak's route between Chicago and St. Louis would be cut to 3 hours and 49 minutes on a high-speed train, according to preliminary estimates.

In the past year, more than 501,000 rides were taken on Amtrak's Lincoln Service route between Chicago and St. Louis, a 284-mile trip, a 15 percent increase over the previous year. Some 1.2 million rides a year would be taken when the route is served by high-speed trains, according projections by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Imagine if we'd invested in this infrastructure five years ago, or even ten? Or forty years ago, as France did?

Krugman today

Despite still being in the "anger" phase of mourning the Cubs' losses last week[1], I took time to read Krugman today: "[T]he McCain [health care] plan would do for health care what deregulation has done for banking. And I'm terrified."

[1] For example, even if the Dodgers go on to win the World Series, they still would have six fewer wins this season than the Cubs. They ended the season behind eight other teams. They simply don't deserve it. So with no small irony—several un-small ironies, in fact—I'm rooting for Boston, if for no other reason than to welcome KT home.

And the Alpha shall be Omega, bleat like a goat, and add another digit to the sign

I hope every Cub who failed to get a hit in the series gets fired.

I also hope TBS disappears in a puff of finance.

I am not happy at all, and my dog, who doesn't understand what 100 minutes looks like let alone 100 years, does not understand why I am yelling at my TV.

The best team in the NL just got swept by a team that didn't even have enough wins to make the wild card. Why? Who knows. Who cares. Fire the lot of them.

My only consolation is, we may have crappy sports teams, but the next President will be a Chicagoan.

Dog phobias

First, Parker got an aversion to box fans. Then ceiling fans. Now he's afraid of anything attached to a ceiling, like light fixtures. Seriously: he keeps looking up at the track lights or ceiling fans in whatever room he's in. Oddly, when a ceilng fan rotates fast enough, he can't see it, and then isn't afraid of it. But light fixtures? They don't do anything, and no amount of demonstrating that I have the power of light and dark over these things seems to ameliorate his anxiety.

Has anyone else seen this kind of thing with dogs? I swear the poor guy can't deal with anything other than clear skies right now.

Why I don't watch television

I'm forced to watch TBS while the Cubs are in the playoffs—at least until I'm forced to watch (shudder) Fox—so I'm seeing TV ads ("commercials" in the vernacular) as if anew.

Aside from the NLDS being brought to us by erections, I'm trying to wrap my mind around Gillette running ads in favor of their new 5-blade razor by trashing their existing 3-blade razor. I happen to use their 3-blade razor. I think I could probably make do with two blades, or even one; but seriously, five? And why trash your own product to sell your new product? (By the way, I hate all-Flash sites. I want steak, not sizzle, which I think makes me un-Mercun.)

And if I have to see one 60-something dude waggling his eyebrows at his wife again while another 60-something dude extols the virtues of hard-ons...that doesn't bollocks. That's almost enough to want the NLDS to end already.

Playing like Cubs

How is it that the team with the most wins in the league faces a team that ended four games over .500 and then falls apart? It's just sad. You'd think in a hundred years someone would figure out why the Cubs can't win the pennant.


Sadly, between the two of them, the English language will be the loser in this debate. (All times Central U.S.)

20:04: First laugh line of the debate: "John McCain is a reformer."

20:08: "Team of mavericks." WTF?

20:15: First, "I'm not going to answer the questions." Second, she eliminated the fool tax? What, she was tired of paying it?

20:23: I just noticed Palin's "mine's-bigger-than-yours" lapel pin. Bless her heart.

20:30: Let's create jobs by not buying any more foreign oil? I think she's stumping for Alaska, not McCain. Also, I think the causes of climate change might have some bearing on the solutions to it, but that's too advanced for Corky.

20:38: You know, people who truly believe adults should be able to chose their own partners don't have to read from a card to state their positions.

20:47: No! I will not countenance four more years of "Nucular!"

20:57: Clear thinking yields clear speech. Now, Eisenhower famously obfuscated when he wanted to but possessed a keen and thoughtful mind that helped us win World War II. In that light, Palin may be similarly concealing a towering intellect, but I'm guessing not.

21:04: If she doesn't know how the Senate works, how can she be its president? More worrying, why doesn't she see this as a problem?

21:06: My dog has left the room because I keep screaming at the TV.

21:11: "Say it ain't so Joe, and there you go again"? WTF?

21:20: Reagan didn't say "shining city on a hill." That was John Winthrop, in the 1630s.

21:18: Has Palin ever actually read the Constitution?

21:26: Not that it's relevant to the debate, but certainly it is to my mood: the Cubs are losing 5-0 in the 3rd.

21:32: Can't say that changed anything, but as an alumnus of << Older posts Newer posts >>